Too Human Wiped From Existence On Xbox Live

Too Human Wiped From Existence On Xbox Live

In November, a US federal judge made the breathtaking order that all copies of Too Human had to be destroyed by its creator, Silicon Knights, as part of a $US4 million judgment awarded to Epic Games in a nasty six-year suit-and-countersuit court battle between the two.

We now see that this extended also to digital copies of the game, as anything associated with Too Human, an Xbox 360 exclusive, has been wiped from Xbox Live.

Eurogamer reports that it means not only the Too Human game itself has been purged from Xbox Live Games on Demand, but also its demo, any videos, pictures, themes, anything. Caput. According to the terms of the judgment, Silicon Knights had to recall all of this stock — paying the costs of doing so — and report to the court and to Epic on December 21 and February 21 that it had complied with the order.

Lest you think this was entirely Epic’s doing, remember that Silicon Knights itself brought the lawsuit that resulted in this judgment, a Matlock-esque reversal of fortune. When it went to court, Silicon Knights had alleged that Epic failed to provide a working game engine for Too Human, resulting in the years-long production delay that made the title an object of ridicule. Silicon Knights also charged that Epic withheld an improved version of the Unreal engine, and used licensing fees to, in bad faith, fund its development of Gears of War and not improve Unreal.

Epic, in turn, claimed Silicon Knights breached its licence agreement, misappropriated Epic’s trade secrets, and infringed Epic’s copyrights in using Unreal Engine 3 code in Too Human. Guess who won.

If this isn’t the end of Silicon Knights, it is at least a brain-rattling knockdown counterpunch, whose president and public face, Denis Dyack, was well known for committing the unpardonable sin of blaming the audience when Too Human thudded after its long overdue 2008 launch. Since then Silicon Knights, which Dyack once proudly exclaimed was one of the oldest developers still around, laid an egg with X-Men: Destiny and pared its employment roster down to a skeleton crew.

Considering the sneering popular reaction to any mention of Too Human, if Silicon Knights has any hope of survival it may be a blessing that this albatross of a flop of a game is being KGB’d from existence by court order.

Too Human and associated content pulled from Xbox marketplace [Eurogamer]


  • No. It is not a blessing. It is a damn shame. If Denis Dyack had kept his narcissistic mouth shut then the reception to the game would have been more honest. It was a really good game, with potential to become a great series. To say it is a blessing it’s being wiped out is ridiculous and an insult to everyone who sacrificed a portion of their lives to make the game happen.

    • Well it’s just being wiped from XBL where, in all honesty, I doubt it was selling too many copies these days anyway. There probably wasn’t any physical stock left anywhere for them to recall (except maybe 2nd hand), so i’m sure there will still be used copies floating around in future for those who want it.

    • I played a fair bit of it. I kinda liked it. If i remember It felt a bit different to other games out at the time.

  • @Strange

    Too Human….Really good game? LOL! Right…You’re a funny one, buddy.There’s a reason it was universally panned and it wasn’t just because of that twats ego. It just plain sucked.

    • What didn’t you like about Too Human? I haven’t played it but you seem to strongly think it’s a bad game, so I want to hear your opinion.

      • Yeah it was a bad game.
        It had a lot of potential, but unfortunately bad design decisions ruined it.
        I was looking forward to it, but gave up like half way through because they had basically gimped my class choice via bad game design.

        Reasons it’s a bad game;

        Clunky movement and combat: attacks take control out of your hands for a period of time, while other enemies are still attacking you. yuck :\

        “Insane amounts of class customisation” was post release bullshit.
        5 classes with 3 skill paths each.
        Each skill path was only a couple of skills different and each skill had prerequisites, so you couldn’t spend points anywhere you wanted either.
        Game play design basically made half the classes and skills horrible and\or useless.
        E.G., melee class VS ranged was horrible. Half of the enemies in game are ranged!
        When hit by ranged attacks, you were knocked over. The ranged attacks are hard to avoid with the clunky game mechanics, so you will constantly be getting knocked over. There were countless times when I found myself ‘stun-locked’ for 15+ seconds.

        I chose the Berserker class and I specialised into melee as much as I could, thinking it would be fun. But it wasn’t…
        I remember one boss (HOD) in particular.
        He jumps around on platforms that you have to destroy. All of the platforms were unreachable by melee, so I HAD to use a ranged weapon (because I was a melee class ranged weapons did bugger all… I should mention that the Berserker has low HP and armour too). HOD does an attack that has almost 100% chance to hit and all the cover is destructible too, so it meant dying a lot. The only way to defeat him was to re-spawn and repeat for 25mins.

        Story was pretty lacking too, but had potential.

        There are more issues with the game, but those are the ones that caused me to give up playing Too Human.


        There were some good things about the game, just not enough to overcome the frustration of all the game play issues.

  • Blaming Epic for the Unreal Engine being unworkable really fails to hold traction IMO, as many many other games have been developed on that engine and worked great.

    Note I said they worked great, not they played great although I’m sure many of them did. I’m sure Timeshift was on the Unreal Engine and I liked that.

    • Corrrrect! Gears of War series, Mass Effect series, Bioshock series, Asuras Wrath, Arkham City, Borderlands 2, Mirrors Edge, Mortal Kombat (reboot), Shadow Complex, so on and so forth.

        • Destroy all copies that haven’t already been sold. They aren’t going to be knocking on everybody’s door and saying hand over the game you bought years ago it has to be destroyed. They definitely would not be, nor would they have a way to, delete them from your harddrive. Legally.

  • I don’t want to comment on who was wrong or right in the case.

    But copyright laws that were designed to protect creators and their content now be using to wipe one creator’s ( actually a large group of creators ) content from existence.

    Nice work legal system… Why not just make silicon knights pay epic for the breach like normal?

    • In this case, Silicon Knights were using Epic’s copyrighted work as part of their game without permission. Any lawyer would have told them that incorporating Unreal Engine code and not paying the associated royalties could lead to this outcome. So while it is unfortunate, it isn’t really unexpected.

  • Too Human could have been a fantastic game in a long and successful series. The graphics were great, the gameplay was innovative, and the story and character design were top notch. The world was beautiful and very original, a mix of cyberpunk and norse mythology. The controls were fluid and extremely well designed. Mowing through those hordes of enemies was fun and satisfying and anyone who denies this hasn’t played the game.

    Too Human was ruined by poor design choices such as a ridiculous amount of status damage (you’d kill a bunch of enemies and then die 10 seconds after because you were “on fire” or “poisoned”) and a lazy difficulty system that gave you far too little health thus making you die every 30 seconds and forcing you to watch a pointless annoying animation every time. For some reason one of the designers thought it would be a good idea to frustrate the fuck out of the player with arbitrary deaths instead of actually challenging them.

    Too Human should be held up as a cautionary tale for developers. You can have an excellent game that is totally ruined and made shitty by seemingly tiny things. It helps not to be an arrogant dick on the game’s forums as well.

    • I think the lack of health is what stopped me from finishing the game even though I enjoyed it. After a while it just started to fell… cheap.

      it’s hard to explain as all difficulty really means is making it harder to kill and easier to die but somehow they way they did it didn’t feel right.

  • Sorry, but if you try and sue someone over your own incompetence then you deserve whatever is thrown back at you. Whats funnier is they then went on to make X-Men Destiny on Unreal Engine 3 as well….. *double facepalm*.

  • i bought a copy of this a while ago for stupidly cheap (cause it was known to be “crap”)… i don’t actually think its a bad game… if it wasn’t for the wacky controls it’d be probably be a LOT better… never finished it though and probably never will… least i have a “rare” game in my collection now that they are being pulled from anywhere that had it still lol

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